Superficially, another silly romp and one of the weaker outings. Yet even it accomplishes a task in addressing another of the great problems arising from the Denny O'neil's mismanagement of the Batman titles: the legacy of Knightfall, the idiocy of Bruce not only being so foolish as to let Bane exhaust him, but then appointing such an unsuitable and unstable personality to replace him. Like all O'neil creations, Azreal and Jean Paul Valley do nothing to justify the qualities O'neil declares them to have, and accepting them on those terms leads to an unworkable storyverse.
Like Plan 9 did with Ra's al Ghul, The R-Word establishes the contempt with which Azrael is viewed, not just by Selina but by all the rogues. It also underlines, through Selina, that no one who truly respects Bruce and understands Batman would imagine he could demonstrate such poor judgment as the Knightfall storyline and pundits of the fandom attribute to him.
Like all Cat-Tales, The R Word can be read online on the Cat-Tales website or mobile mirror, and can be downloaded as an ebook or pdf, which is sized for printing at Cafe Press. It is collected in Cat-Tales Book 1.
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